By Steven Smeall
The Monday Morning Minute, an email-based project started by the Centre for Organizational Learning, is off to a strong start.
A Monday Morning Minute is an email that is delivered to faculty members. Each email consists of information that is of personal interest to the faculty.
The project began officially Feb. 4, when the first edition of the email was sent. Since then, new editions have been released every Monday, with a new focus in each email.
When the project was in works, the project plan was to make it so that faculty would be provided information that is just enough, just in time, and just for them. Through the updates already released, these goals are being met.
The project is being headed by Algonquin’s Centre for Online Learning. Project manager Gail Allan has been blown away by the response to the emails so far.
“I’m getting stopped by faculty in the hall who are saying that they love the Monday Morning Minute,” said Allan.
The Monday Morning Minute will be released every week until the second week of June and then will be taking a break until the end of August, when it will start back up again for the fall semester.
Each of these emails is themed around one idea for example, the Mar. 25 edition of the Monday Morning Minute featured Lindsay Harris, a faculty member in Police Foundations, who explained to faculty the importance of balancing what students learn in-class and online in hybrid courses.
Francesco Tangorra, a professor/coordinator for construction/civil engineering, thinks the project has been a huge success as well.
“I have found the Monday Morning Minute to be great. It is something that I look forward to every Monday. The content has been not only informative, but useful,” said Tangorra.
Each edition of the email features a video that faculty can enjoy or possibly a link to an off-site article if they would like to learn more about the topic the edition is discussing.
“We’re really showcasing the videos that were made by real faculty at the college who have had successes in a wide variety of areas in teaching,” said Allan.
The emails are also posted on a webpage where faculty can sign up to receive the updates right to their email.
“It’s amazing that we already got over 900 unique hits already and every week the number of hits goes up,” said Allan.
Another purpose of the Monday Morning Minute was to get faculty working together, sharing what they had recently learned and just how they thought things could be improved.
This idea has also been brought to life by the project, as faculty are often commenting on the posts to give their thoughts and ideas.
The information provided in the emails even has faculty considering implementing it to the courses they teach.
“As part of my summer work, I will be reviewing my teachable courses and make select changes to implement a number of the tips brought forward by the Monday Morning Minute,” said Tangorra.
One problem however, is that faculty are having trouble accessing a website through one of the editions.
Some editions link to a site called Magnapubs, which is where you can read articles from The Teaching Professor and The Online Classroom, two publications which are included with some Monday Morning Minutes.
Faculty are required to have their own account with the website. Instructions have been posted on the Monday Morning Minute website for faculty who are experiencing troubles.
A survey will be conducted to see if there are other problems.
“In early June we will be looking for some feedback from faculty,” said Allan.
Faculty can expect to be provided with the Monday Morning Minute throughout the school year for the foreseeable future.